Petraeus says it was a privilege to serve with 'new greatest gen - WNCN: News, Weather

Petraeus says it was a privilege to serve with 'new greatest generation'

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Gen. David H. Petraeus spoke at Page Auditorium on Duke University's Campus about the United States and the world. Gen. David H. Petraeus spoke at Page Auditorium on Duke University's Campus about the United States and the world.
DURHAM, N.C. -

Retired Army Gen. David H. Petraeus spoke at Page Auditorium on Duke University's Campus about the United States and the world.

Petraeus spent 37 years in the military and a little more than a year as director of the CIA before stepping down after admitting to an affair.

He was in charge of the Coalition Forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.

He said in the years since 9/11 the senior leadership of al-Qaida has been diminished, but the global war on terror doesn't end with a dagger in the heart.

He said it's not the simple.  In fact, Petraeus said al-Qaida is not like the old organization in which orders came from Osama Bin Laden. Now, there are more independent groups of terrorists in a number of countries.

Asking men and women in the audience who served in armed forced to stand, Petraeus said those who have served in the post 9/11 years are part of the "new greatest generation."

"I feel deeply privileged to have served, as the provost mentioned, so many years -- tough missions, important undertakings and very difficult places -- with that generation," Petraeus said.

Petraeus also said he's still skeptical about putting together a plan that would put Syria's chemical weapons under international control for their subsequent dismantling.

The former four-star generaltold the crowd that the Russian offer gave the Obama administration a lifeline of sorts after congressional support for military action was diminishing.

Nearly all of the 800 seat in the auditorium were filled and students could watch a feed in an overflow space at the student center.

Justin Quesinberry

Justin is a reporter for WNCN and a North Carolina native. He has spent the better part of the last decade covering the news in central North Carolina.  More>>

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